Christmas Cheer Board of Winnipeg expects to provide out 17Ok meals vouchers over the vacations – Winnipeg

While COVID-19 has drastically changed how the Christmas Cheer Board can operate this year, the non-profit isn’t letting the pandemic slow down its annual push to spread holiday cheer to families in need.

Instead of handing out hampers filled with food and gifts this holiday season, the Cheer Board will be mailing out food vouchers, and executive director Kai Madsen says the long-running social service is gearing up to help upwards of 17,000 families through the effort.

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“Under normal conditions we would have traffic flow in our warehouse of around 6,000 to 8,000 doing the bulk of the work, but under these COVID rules that’s just not practical, that can’t be done,” he told CJOB 680 Monday.

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“So we had to come up with an innovative, and workable solution, and I think we’ve done that.”

#winnipeg #givingtuesdayca Black Friday, Cyber Monday and now it’s time to share with Winnipeggers in need. Please donate to help pay for food vouchers we are sending this season….we are busy getting vouchers ready.

— ChristmasCheerBoard (@ChristmasCheerB) December 1, 2020

The food vouchers, ranging from $30 for a single person to $100 for families of six or more, are redeemable at Safeway, Sobeys, IGA, and FreshCo locations.

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Madsen says the vouchers can be used anytime, not just through the holidays.

“It’s not as good as a hamper, I can assure you, but it’s still a good sort of help,” Madsen said of this year’s move to vouchers.

#winnipeg Did you know our hamper sponsorship program, Feed-a-Family, is open for registration?
You are matched with a family & you build the hamper & arrange for curbside, contactless delivery! Great way to give back to our community.…/sponsor-a-hamper

— ChristmasCheerBoard (@ChristmasCheerB) November 25, 2020

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“I hope that it will help people a little bit.”

And while the pandemic has put a pause on the larger hamper effort this year, Madsen says the organization’s sponsored Feed-A-Family hamper program is continuing.

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Through the program, families or groups of Winnipeggers can register to put a hamper together and deliver it to a family on their own, with guidance from the Cheer Board.

The Feed-a-Family program is taking registrations until Sunday and Winnipeggers can volunteer to help or donate to the charity’s food voucher effort through the Christmas Cheer Board website.

Click to play video: 'Season of Giving: Christmas Cheer Board'

Season of Giving: Christmas Cheer Board


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